After a rather stressful but fascinating (wait for the trip report) trip through the Balkans, my arrival in Thessalonki, Greece yesterday was most welcomed. I have sought refuge at the Hyatt Regency Thessalonki for a couple nights and plan only to leave the property to check out Thessalonki tonight.
The Hyatt resort is everything I needed after several days of consecutive multi-hour bus trips and shabby hotels and hostels–a sprawling property with indoor and outdoor pools, a great fitness center, beautiful warm weather (not too hot, not too cold at 29C/84F), and delightful accomodations.
It seems that no matter how well I plan for a trip, there are always things I discover that I missed. In this case, Thessalonki is close to Mount Athos. Wish I had looked at the map a little closer! Mount Athos is a self-governed state within Greece and home to more than 20 Orthodox monasteries. Entrance to Mount Athos is strictly controlled, with 100 Orthodox and 10 non-Orthodox allowed in each day. Females are prohibited. Permission to enter must be obtained in advance. Sound fascinating…
The upside is now I have a reason to retrun to Thessalonki and I intend to so so next year. For now, though, I am going back to the pool.